OFF GRID Rainwater Harvesting Part 4 – solar powered pump

Battery Shunt

diy holder for DC shunt to negative side of battery

I fabricated a holder for this shunt from scrap plywood as it didn’t come with one. A shunt will allow me to monitor how much power is going in or out of the battery.

attach shunt to control board before wiring it to monitors

I’m now making the negative wire from the controller to the fuse block. And then the negative from that same terminal to the shunt.

make negative wire from fuse block to shunt

The wire from the controller is 8 gauge and the wire to the shunt is 4 gauge.

DIY toggle switch holder for DC water pump

Here I’ll add a toggle switch for the water pump. I made a small bracket from plywood for this switch. Then I’ll run a positive wire from the switch to the fuse block. This circuit in the panel will have a 10 amp fuse.

ratchet crimper for lighter gauge wires

I’ll strip that wire then crimp on a connector. Then heat the sleeve to shrink it. Then secure that wire to the block.

drill holes in plywood control board to add bolt terminals for sola panels

I drill two holes through the plywood. Then add two bolts to make terminals for the solar panel wires. Then I’ll make up the positive and negative wires that go from the controller to these terminals.

DIY Solar Terminals

add nuts to panel terminals

I’m doing this to make connection and disconnection of the panel wires easier. The controller that came with the kit has terminal screws at the back. And they will be difficult to get to once I mount this board in the pump house box.

wiring the monitors to the battery shunt

The monitor displays are attached to the shunt and will show the charging and discharging of this battery in this system. I used speaker wire and crimp connectors for this.

monitors attached to solar controller board with velcro

The displays also need power so there’s wires to the panel for this. I’ll attach these monitors to the plywood with velcro.

Smoke Test!!

OFF GRID Rainwater Harvesting System testing the solar board smoke test

Now I’ll connect the red positive wire to the battery. Followed by the negative. If everything is wired correctly then the solar controller will show the battery voltage. And one of the monitors will show a small draw from the battery as well.

output monitor showing small load from the controller

I’m sure it’s just me but I really like making up these systems and mounting and connecting all the hardware. It gives me a real sense of satisfaction.

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